Last week I received the THRUSTMASTER PENDULAR RUDDER (thanks Amazon). I know the first thought should be – which was also mine – “are you crazy? It costs a lot!” Yes, you’re right! But during this bad period due to Covid-19, I decided to take a whim, since you only live once 😊
Jokes apart, after years with a Saitek Pro Flight Rudder Pedals, I decided to invest some money in a completely different piece of hardware, made of metal (not bad plastic), hoping that it will last few years, and with a more precise movements and feeling as well. Having owned the Thrustmaster Hotas Warthog for more than 5 years without any problem (I’m still using it), I know the quality of the products of this company.
Package Contents and tips for installation
On each side you find the pedal
Now even if a manual is included, I spent about 10min before understanding how to mount both pedals. To avoid you any issue here what you should do:
First you need to rotate the sensor’s arm because for unknown reason it’s not in the right position (at least mine)
2. Then you need to remove the nut and the washer from both pedals
3. Unscrew the two screws on the back of both pedals
4. Insert the pedal into the arm of the body and follow the instructions on the manual. If you want to adjust the inclination of the pedals, it’s better to do it now. For my taste I set it to the most inclined position). Before connecting the cable to an USB port on your pc, remember to download the driver from Thrustmaster website. My TPR came with the latest firmware as well.
Photo Comparison: Saitek vs TPR
- Quality, materials, weight (about 7.5Kg)
- Very precise, great default null zone, smooth movements
- No calibration needed (at least for me)
- It is not necessary to fix it to the floor. I use an anti-slip and that’s it. (Contrary to the Saitek which slips despite the anti-slip – too light)
- The position of my feet on the pedals is not as comfortable as the Saitek. If you use a normal office chair and are close to the desk, it will be inconvenient to use, but in the end you get used to it (this is my opinion)
I spent only 1 week flying around Europe for our great VA, about 4-5 flights per day using this great piece of hardware. I use it only with Prepar3D v4.5 but with different planes (PMDG 737NGXU, 777, 747 and FSLabs 320) and in different weather conditions, which required crab landing technique, so you have to use your rudder pedals a lot.
My conclusion is very simple and probably the only one possible: another world! The price is high, but if you can afford buy the TPR without any hesitation!
Your flights will never be the same, the precision you get will allow you to maneuver and to brake like never before. If you fly mostly airliners, the rudders are used almost exclusively on takeoff, landing and taxiing (not having the tiller) but believe me, it will be really another sensation, for sure more realistic.
Just one note on my previous Saitek Rudder Pedals: they’re not bad, they do the job quite good but this “good” is nothing compared to the TPR. The Saitek (and the CH which I used years ago) worth the money they cost, full stop. But if you want precision and realism you have to go on another hardware, like the TPR.
Hope you find this little and quick review useful. Anyway, I suggest you looking on youtube to find some video reviews of the TPR, so you can have other points of view, in case you decide to buy them and divorce your wife 😊
Massimo “a320wolf” Solimbergo